Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2013 May 4
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Hungarian Spring Eclipse
Image Credit & Copyright: Tamas Ladanyi (TWAN)

Explanation: Last week, as the Sun set a Full Moon rose over the springtime landscape of Tihany, Hungary on the northern shores of Lake Balaton. As it climbed into the clear sky, the Moon just grazed the dark, umbral shadow of planet Earth in the year's first partial lunar eclipse. The partial phase, seen near the top of this frame where the lunar disk is darkened along the upper limb, lasted for less than 27 minutes. Composited from consecutive exposures, the picture presents the scene's range of natural colors and subtle shading apparent to the eye. At next week's New Moon, the season's celestial shadow play will continue with an annular solar eclipse, the path of annularity tracking through northern Australia and the central Pacific.

Tomorrow's picture: cloudy skies

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